Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s office has condemned outgoing U.S. army chief General Raymond Odierno’s statement that Iraq might be partitioned.
Abadi’s media office said on August 13 that it was "an irresponsible statement [that] reflects an ignorance of the Iraqi reality."
The Army's retiring top general said on August 12 that partition “could happen" and "might be the only solution, but I'm not ready to say that yet.”
He said reconciliation between Sunnis and Shi’ites is “becoming more difficult by the day."
Odierno served as the top U.S. commander in Iraq from 2008 to 2010.
The issue of partition is an extremely sensitive one for Baghdad, as the country is fighting to regain swathes of Iraq’s north and west seized by Islamic State militants.
Speaking at his final Pentagon news conference, Odierno said the fight against Islamic State rebels is at a stalemate, and if the U.S. military does not see progress in coming months it should consider embedding troops with Iraqi forces.